Unless you have been hiding under a rock these past few weeks, you probably know that the much-awaited Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones are finally out!
Judging by the initial numbers, it looks like Samsung scored another home run with these flagship phones. Reports indicate that the combined Galaxy S8 preorder totals set a new record for Samsung, enough to call it its best ever launch.
And as we’ve mentioned before, there are plenty of reasons to be excited about the new S8s – virtual home buttons, facial recognition, new 10nm processors, DeX desktop support, Bluetooth 5.0 with dual audio streaming, a headphone jack, free high-quality AKG earphones out of the box and beautiful edge-to-edge glass screens.
Hmm, beautiful edge-to-edge glass screens – as stunning as they look, will they be hardy enough to survive a drop?
Gadget torture chamber masters SquareTrade sought to find out.
Susceptible to cracking
Unfortunately, according to SquareTrade, due to the all-glass design, the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ are extremely susceptible to cracking when dropped from any angle.
Their conclusion was derived from the gamut of durability tests they ran the S8s through – a face drop test, a backdrop test, a tumble test and a water dunk test.
In their initial 6-feet face drop tests on concrete, both S8 models suffered loose glass and starburst cracks on just the first drop. They admit that this is the first phone they’ve tested that cracked on the first drop on all sides.
The 6-feet backdrop test yielded the same results – spiderweb, starburst cracks and even front side damage after only one drop.
The S8s fared better on the water dunk tests due to their IP68 water and dust proofing rating. After soaking for 30 minutes under 5 feet of water, the phones only suffered temporary audio muffling and distortion but were perfectly fine otherwise.
The last test was repairability and SquareTrade found that the S8s are pretty hard to service due to the strong adhesive attaching both front and back glass panels, the difficult battery placement/removal and the flimsy rear fingerprint sensor cable.
For their final breakability score, SquareTrade gave the Galaxy S8 a 76 and the S8+ a 77, both falling under medium-high risks.
The moral of this story is that if you have or are planning to get an S8, fantastic as it is, please don’t drop it at all costs. A protective case is also a must if you want to keep your beautiful phone as pristine as possible.
Other early adopter issues
Another issue reported by some early customers is a noticeable “red tint” on the S8 display’s color temperature. Basically, the white balance of some early units is off. Thankfully, the problem seems to be a software issue and not a hardware defect and Samsung announced that it is pushing a patch to fix it.
Multiple users are also complaining about Wi-Fi connectivity and wireless charging issues for their S8s.
The Wi-Fi bug is causing intermittent connections to certain Wi-Fi connections and is said to be due to a conflict between the S8’s advanced power saving function and specific wireless access points.
The wireless charging issue, on the other hand, prevents S8s from charging with older Qi wireless charging pads.
Samsung announced that it will likewise push a patch for the Wi-Fi bug soon.
Unfortunately, there is no scheduled fix for the wireless charging issue as of yet.
What do you think? Will the S8’s fragility prevent you from getting one? Drop us a comment!